It's becoming clear to me that in-depth race reports, and long-form blog posts are not going to happen with any great frequency here during race season.... not with the hours I've been keeping lately anyway. I'm not going to get reports up for each race on my calendar...maybe that's a good thing. This is all so new to me...I'm still trying to figure out my own appetite for it.
But in the spirit making posts happen, tonight I'm offering a few bits of video from my race last Sunday - a 50k finish at the Pineland Farms Trail Challenge, New Gloucester ME - for you to inevitably comment away at..... of course this makes the wild assumption that there's anyone reading this.
A beautiful venue, superb organization and aid - thank you to Erik Boucher, Ian Parlin and everyone who supported the event. I'll be back.
Now understand, once again race day/weekend didn't go exactly to plan...... by which I mean I went into Sunday's race without sleep. As I'd also raced the day before, I was really pushing the limits of what was reasonable.... but I wanted my finisher's cowbell. :-)
First we have a (thankfully) anonymous runner taking leave as I come down around the corner of one of the tractor roads ringing the fields we traversed throughout the day..... I had some momentum here early in the race and didn't realize what he was doing until I was right behind him. He wasn't exactly in the woods..... Some aren't so good-natured in situations like this, but he seems unfazed :-)
Then there were the cows.... in my sleep-deprived-80%-of-max-heart-rate-induced-delirium.... worst right around this point - I started talking to this pair of fine New England moo-cows. Maybe it's because I'm from Pennsylvania....I don't know - but I've *never* been cow tipping, Scout's Honor. They too seem unfazed by the video attention.
If one is to keep their sanity out on the trails for extended periods of time, they need to keep themselves busy - sometimes that means talking with others, talking to yourself (or cows) - but often it's music, humming, laughing at lots of the little unexpected things you see and encounter... the cowbells at the aid stations started to make me laugh along with all the attention and aid they had to give; I wanted to share.
By the time I shot this aid station clip, it was time to get down to business. I had enough fuel and adrenaline going now, and since the rain started to set in, I put the camera away and focused on keeping a good pace to ensure I could finish without feeling I 'wasted' time on the course.
After a few hours of rain, the sun showered us with rays that had me finishing in a dry shirt....a great run of weather for the timing of our ultra distance that day...some of the 50m finishers coming in after me likely wished the sun had stayed away awhile longer.
I was lucky enough to have the finish line to myself at 6h33m and change...all the cowbell one could hope for!! Once I had my own bell in hand, I retreated to a few hay bales with a huge grin on my face, and started downing warm veggie burgers, pasta salad, and cold beer - what a spread!
Thrilled to see and be chatting with so many (!) good trailrunning friends and acquaintances. Just as many friends couldn't be with me for the day, but getting to re-visit a great race with lots of smiles around was the perfect ending.... bluegrass and cowbells in the air 'til the end. Fantastic....